News Feature | February 13, 2014

Grocery And Convenience Store IT News For VARs — February 13, 2014

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By Anna Rose Welch, associate editor

Grocery or Conveience Store

News this week includes a number of reports from the NGA Show: topics include how grocers can expand e-commerce and how stores can build “a sense of community” through digital media. Another panel topic was how grocers could use Google Glass to provide store maps or self-checkout on sight or to provide sales associates with customer profiles.

Independent Grocers Seek Digital Innovation

Supermarket News covered some of the highlights of the annual NGA (National Grocers Association) Show, Feb. 9-12. The independent grocery sector needs to amp up digital marketing in order to provide consumers with a more personalized experience and to get ahead. John Phillips from Pepsi says that GPS technology has helped bring down barriers between online and physical worlds. He also argues that in order to gain customer loyalty and create a personalized experience, stores need to figure out how to get into ecommerce. Figuring out how to drive sales at the point of purchase will be key for grocers, Phillips says. 

In another panel from the NGA Show, Wakefern COO Joe Sheridan says that independents are best equipped to tackle the “disruption” of e-commerce. Because owners are close to their business, they can more quickly evolve to meet consumers’ needs and demands for innovation.

Progressive Grocer highlights a panel on how grocers can use digital media, in particular apps that “bridge the gap between brand and shopper” to build a sense of community. Another panel discussed how the Google Glass device could be used in grocery stores, providing users with maps and self-checkout by sight. It could also be given to store associates so they can view customer profiles and interact more personally with them in-store.

Just How Disruptive Will Mobile Be For Retail?

CSPnet.com has compiled a “Digital Recap” roundup of previous CSPnet.com articles that discuss and showcase some of the disruptive effects smartphones may have on the convenience store industry. These articles discuss the impact of mobile on the retail landscape, the use of digital currency, and the battle to own the smartphone’s “secure element,” among other topics.

Valentine’s Day Shopping Going Digital

Online and digital advertising has begun to play an influential role in consumers’ Valentines Day purchases, a recent Adroit Digital study has discovered. According to the results of this study, 59 percent of respondents were planning to purchase their Valentine’s Day gifts online — including using smartphones and tablets. A majority of consumers (58 percent) say that online/mobile advertising will influence their purchasing decisions. Consumers also are showing more interest in personalized ads. According to the results 36 percent of shoppers said that a personalized ad would make them 50 percent more likely to respond to that ad.

Retail Industry Behind In Security Spending

Reuters reports that retailers are facing increasing pressures to invest in cybersecurity methods. According to IDC Retail Insights, retail technology spending was expected to rise 4 percent annually between 2012 and 2017. However, only 2 percent of retailers’ tech budgets have been spent on security, IDC Retail Insights says. This is expected to change, as IDC expects retailers to increase security spending by 5.7 percent to $720 million in response to recent breaches and other outside pressures.

Grocery And Convenience Store Talking Points

According to the New Hampshire Business Review, personalized grocery services that deliver to hotel guests are a rising trend in the hotel industry.

Michael Youngkin for Convenience Store News discusses the future of the c-store industry, highlighting the big “game-changers” including: foodservice evolution, payments innovation, and in-store network technology. In order to ensure food quality for customers, Youngkin says cloud-based foodservice monitoring is best for analyzing data and performance and identifying equipment problems quickly. In terms of payment innovation, he argues that mobile solutions that combine loyalty and reward programs with mobile apps/payments provide value for both retailer and consumer.

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo’s Grocery and Convenience Store Tech Center.

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